7 steps to the ultimate cosy cottage look

From patterns to wood...

Still life interior details, bouquet of lilac in basket.
AnjelaGrGetty Images

The cosy cottage look is coveted by many. A decorating style that offers comfort, warmth and an escape from reality, it's easier than you think to recreate the look in your own home.

While every home has its own character and charm, there are a handful of decor essentials that you'll find commonplace in every cottage – wherever you are! Here, interior designer Vanessa Arbuthnott shares her top tips to help bring an essence of luxury and nostalgic country into your own cottage today.

1. Throws

      'Throws are a great addition to any cottage,' says Vanessa. 'One draped at the end of each sofa provides the key comfort factor and also makes for an easy grab when things get chilly. Throws are also a great way to add a pop of colour into the room which can easily be updated to change the look for the specific type of season.'

      2. Textiles

        If you want to add a feature to a classic cottage with a traditional white and cream colour scheme then you should turn to textiles. 'A quilt of many colours on top of a crisp white bed will give the cottage an instant revival especially when paired with patterned pillows. The more vintage the cottage décor the more the space feels organic and rustic,' Vanessa explains.

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        3. Super soft rugs

          Beautiful and warm rugs which feel soft under the feet are a must-have for cottages. Vanessa says in this case, 'the more eye catching and bold the better'. Deep pile luxury rugs will add to the cosy feel of modern cottages.

          4. Feature houseplants

            'Plants are ideal for creating a gentle variation in colour as well as capturing an organic and all-encompassing natural vibe,' says Vanessa. 'In cottages which are older they can actually help tackle damp in the air as well, if the right varieties are chosen.'

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            5. Paisley and floral patterns

              If you tour any rural cottage, you will be inspired by the use of patterns especially in the form of florals and paisleys. Vanessa explains: 'These work perfect in a cottage setting as they are naturally traditional but fresh and pretty. They are great to add light in the darkest of corners and can spruce up any area in the cottage.'

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              6. Display books

                Books take on a new identity in country homes as they make for beautiful interior design accessories. 'When housed in shelving units, the books can be a great way to add in serious colour in an organised and structured way,' suggests Vanessa. 'If your books are hard cover and made up of different colours it is the perfect addition. Even better, place them in a display cabinet adjacent to your log fire for the ultimate rustic feel.'

                7. Wood

                  Reclaimed, weathered or painted wood is always integral in cottage interior design. Vanessa explains: 'Dark natural wood is a great alternative for those who want to add depth and contrast to their home without adding any other colour. Weathered wood is also a great feature since it breaks up the white base.'

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